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Sylvia Walton opened her bank account with Barclays in 1944 while World War II was still raging — more than a decade before its current chief executive was even born.
A retired nurse and great-grandmother, the 91-year-old has been a loyal customer for 75 years.
People - Countryside - Sylvia - Post - Office
Like so many elderly people living in the countryside, Sylvia’s local post office acts as a lifeline.
Her nearest Barclays branch, in Stowmarket, is five miles from her home in Elmswell, Suffolk, so she withdraws her pension — which is paid into her current account — over the counter at the post office round the corner, just two minutes away.
Though not for much longer.
For in a move that even the most greedy and heartless of bankers would find cruel, Barclays’ executives have nevertheless made the decision to axe cash withdrawals from post offices.
Firm - Policy - Distress - Customers - Move
The firm’s new policy has caused immense distress to its vulnerable customers, but it is determined on steam-rollering ahead with the penny-pinching move — even though in the context of its enormous profits, the savings it will make at the expense of Sylvia and others like her look paltry.
Barclays is expected to shave around £7 million a year off its costs as a result of the move; a negligible sum for a bank which analysts estimate raked in £17 million a day in profits over the summer.
If that is not sheer greed, it is hard to know what is.
And Sylvia is actually one of the lucky ones. She can still drive — though she does worry about how she will take out her cash when the day comes when she can’t.
Mick - Mahon - Fisherman - Grimsby - Position
Mick Mahon, 71, a retired fisherman from Grimsby, is already in that position.
He suffers from osteo-arthritis and finds it difficult to walk further than to the top of his street — let alone the two miles...
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